Report: Unified Fabric Could Reduce Data Center Costs

Networking is quickly becoming a central part of data center management, as such trends as virtualization and consolidation continue to take hold.

According to a recent IDC report, most data centers address their complex networking needs by establishing multiple networks running in parallel. This helps alleviate the bandwidth of any single network by creating a LAN to connect machines to the internet while using a SAN to manage storage network needs.

The IDC report said having multiple networks can create an expensive data center environment. However, investing in unified fabric technologies, including fiber channel over Ethernet, can unify the disparate networks and reduce operating costs for hardware on equipment racks by as much as 34 percent annually, according to the report.

Determining the overall return on investment of unified fabric systems was difficult, the report said, because the vendor climate is unsettled at this point. However, looking at six distinct unified fabric solutions led IDC to anticipate an ROI of 492 percent for most products.

Cisco recently announced a complete renovation of its entire unified fabric line. The new stable of products is designed to create an end-to-end unified fabric solution through new switches and unified computing systems.